Eggs and salsa diabla

Salsa macha is an oil-based salsa—more like a chili paste—that originated in Veracruz. I’m not sure we’ll ever know why someone decided to name this excellent condiment with the feminine form of macho, but local tamale and masa tycoons La Guadalupana avoided gender confusion by calling their commercial La Lupita brand the less ambiguous “Salsa Diabla,” or “she-devil sauce.”

La Lupita Salsa Diabla

Dr. Peter Engler first introduced me to its toasty, smoky, spicy pleasures years ago at the LG production facility on South Archer, but recently I’ve noticed it popping up at more and more retail spots like Cermak Produce and Cremeria la Ordeña #2. The La Lupita brand is a bit simpler than most published recipes, which often include toasted nuts, vinegar, sugar, or sesame seeds. Here it’s just arbol chilies, garlic, corn oil, olive oil, and salt, which as simple that it sounds reminds me of Chinese-style chili oils like this one, developed by Friend of Food Chain Gary Wiviott. And that just goes to underscore its versatility, useful in and on everything from rice, to noodles, to eggs, soups, stews, marinades, and dressings. The chili flakes sink to the bottom so you can just apply the oil or mix it up to make a crunchy paste.

Here’s to evil!